Global action is to be taken against criminals who exploit wildlife, under new schemes to be introduced by the UNEP, it was announced in Chile at the weekend at the Conference of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES)
Illegal trade in wildlife is the third source of criminal income, behind arms and drugs and it is a practice which places numerous species in danger of extinction. Among the products mentioned in the illegal trading were beluga caviar, which costs 950 USD for 125 grammes in European airport shops.
Willem Wijnstekers, the Secretary-General of CITES, declared that local hunters and fishermen also end up being exploited: “While these hard-pressed workers scour the wilderness to earn small amounts of money to feed their families, the crime syndicates that control the poaching and smuggling reap enormous profits”.
The Conference will debate the success of previous measures taken against illegal traders of caviar and ivory and new measures to enforce policy against poachers and smugglers.
Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru
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